Gold mining in Kakamega

Gold mining in Kakamega.

| File | Nation Media Group

Kakamega gold prospector reports promising finding after phase one

Shanta Gold Ltd, the firm that is exploring gold in western Kenya has completed the first drilling phase after reaching 9,383 metres, with focus now shifting to the region's gold potential in the second phase.

This second phase is what will determine Western Kenya’s true gold potential, according to the mining firm.

Shanta says it is on track to complete 35-40 per cent of the total planned drilling by the end of 2021.

In the first phase, the firm reported that visible gold was identified in four different intersections across 15 holes that were drilled.

The project is in three phases to be explored within Isulu and Bushangala in Kakamega County.

The Lirhanda corridor is projected to contain 1.03 million ounces (28.3kg) of gold worth Sh164 billion.

It is believed the gold deposits in the corridor can be mined for 10 years once a mine is established.

Second phase

In its latest exploration update, the firm says the second phase will go up to the depth of 450 metres in its effort to uncover Western Kenya’s true gold potential.

The update by Shanta notes that the Western Kenya project covers 1,162km² of the highly prospective and under-explored greenstone archaean Busia-Kakamega Gold Belt in Western Kenya.

The explorer says the ongoing drilling, now in its second phase, is aimed at upgrading ounces from the project’s NI43-101 compliant inferred mineral resource estimate into the indicated resource category, down to a depth of 600 metres across three drilling phases.

“This infill drilling is aimed at verifying the extent and geometry of the known mineralised zones developed for the current resource model," Shanta Gold Ltd says in its update.

During the second phase, 26 per cent of total planned drilling will be undertaken during the remaining months of this year, while another 10 per cent will then follow.

Active drill rigs

Currently, two drill rigs are active at the Isulu and Bushiangala deposits, with the third active rig expected this month.

A sign that there could be positive results, the firm reports that visible gold was identified in four different intersections across 15 holes that have been drilled.

While expressing satisfaction of the exploration, Mr Eric Zurrin, the CEO, said: “We are delighted to have reported another set of exceptionally strong results from Phase One of our drilling programme at West Kenya.”

He added: “Throughout the course of this programme, we have delivered some of the best drilling results we have ever seen at Shanta, and look forward to progressing Phase Two across our portfolio of licences as we look to uncover western Kenya’s true potential.”

The official explains that exploration is integral to the firm's sustainable growth story.

This, he says, will help transform Shanta Gold Ltd into a mid-tier gold producer in Africa to support long-term returns for shareholders.